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Topic Three: Silicone Wound Contact Layer Dressings

(An example of a silicone dressing).

Silicone dressings are indicated as primary dressings. These types of dressings are suitable for painful wounds as they are able to minimise trauma to the wound and the patient during dressing changes. Silicone dressings may also be used on wounds with compromised skin (e.g. macerated or fragile skin). As discussed previously, wound contact layers can be made from traditional materials. However, Silicone based products are particularly noted for their ability to:

  • Conform to the wound
  • Be allergy free
  • Prevent pain at dressing change
  • Prevent epithelial stripping on removal

(Meuleneire et al., 2013)

These products are virtually non-adherent and are designed to be placed in contact with the wound and covered with a secondary dressing. Exudate passes through the silicone dressing onto the secondary dressing. The secondary dressing can then be changed as required whilst the silicone dressing remains in the wound. A silicone wound contact layer dressing can remain in the wound for up to 14 days, depending on the patient’s health and volume of exudate being produced. This helps to reduce the frequency of dressing changes and disturbance to the wound bed. This, in turn, also helps the integrity of the periwound skin (Mancini, 2015). However, the wear time does vary between products.